Bus Takeover Plan On Hold But New Timetable In Place
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s takeover of seven private bus lines in the city that serve hundreds of thousands of riders is expected to be delayed yet again.
Those lines include three that have a high ridership in Rockaway and Broad Channel – Green Bus Line, Jamaica Bus Lines and Triboro Coach Company. Those three lines are used by hundreds of local riders each day.
The current deadline, which was delayed from July, is December 4. But Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who first proposed the takeover two years ago, asked the Council to approve more time, as the city continues to negotiate the final terms with the companies. A vote by the City Council is expected soon, perhaps prior to press time.
Under the new plan, the first line would be transferred to MTA control in the middle of January, and the takeover would be complete by the end of April.
There have been concerns about job cuts and service cuts when the MTA takes over, but officials have promised that service will actually improve. More than 300 brand new buses have been ordered, or will shortly be ordered for the routes, with more buses likely to be purchased as well.
The timelines calls for the MTA to take over Liberty Lines Express on January 15, Queens Surface on February 26, Green Bus Lines New York Bus Service on March 26 and Command, Jamaica and Triboro Coach on April 30.